Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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RICE, Daniel, showman, born in New York city in 1822. His name was originally McLaren, but he changed it to Rice after removing to Pitts-burg, Pennsylvania, and becoming an acrobat. He afterward travelled as a circus-clown through the west and southwest, and acquired such popularity that he was enabled to exhibit his own circus, which his rivals derisively called the "one-horse show" because the chief attraction, besides his jests, was a trained Arabian stallion. He soon gathered a large company, and enhanced the reputation of his "great and only show" by munificent gifts for charitable purposes and public monuments. During the civil war he promoted recruiting by delivering patriotic speeches in connection with his comic performances. He met with financial disaster, and performed under the management of others until intemperate habits interfered with his engagements. Having reformed, he occasionally lectured in advocacy of temperance. He resided in Cincinnati, Ohio, and subsequently in Texas, where he became a large land-owner.
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